I completely scrapped my first essay and did more of a personal statement on the same theme. Here goes:
And now, our final performance will be a rendition of the Beatles song, I Want to Hold Your Hand, the emcee announced. My roommate and I casually strode out on stage. As I counted off, he energetically strummed the chords on his guitar: C,D,C,D,G. I grinned as the words flowed from my mouth: Oh yeah, Ill, tell you something Just two minutes ago, I had been sweating nervously, as I do before any musical performance. When I started to sing, I forgot why. Within three minutes, the once-silent audience gave us a standing ovation; we walked off-stage deafened by applause and cheers. Where did this performance occur, one might ask? At a music camp? On the contrary, this took place at the University of Pennsylvanias Summer Science Academy.
I entered the Penn summer program in biomedical research to develop my love for science. Ive always held a fascination with the way the world works and how it fits into predictable patterns. I was initially excited to be able to interact with academically gifted people who shared my passion. Unfortunately, a majority of my peers had no personality whatsoever; they were robots, programmed for scientific analysis. All of their energy was dedicated to the sole task of mindless academic memorization. I was frighteningly reminded of my middle-school self through my peers. Fortunately, I had long since discovered that if I were to only live by science, I would be no different than the computer on which I am typing. Science teaches me to think, to analyze, but it does not teach me how to feel, how to enjoy life. This is where my musical passion comes into play.
I would be lying if I said that I always enjoy the rigors of high school. Each day brings with it a host of challenges. I strive for an occasional release from these challenges, which I get through music. My lively a cappella rehearsals put a much-needed grin on my weary face, and my piano playing allows me to express my emotions freely. Music adds color to my otherwise black-and-white life. Whenever I feel overwhelmed from hours of schoolwork, I sit at my piano and improvise. My fingers become the tools of my heart, tensing and relaxing with my emotions. I dont listen to what I play; I feel it. Time seems to stop. Through music, I am able to convey emotions that I could never express with words.
Of course, too much of anything is detrimental. Music offers a release from the stress of daily life, but I cannot ignore my academic responsibilities. Much like the Freudian concept of the id, music is an expression of my emotions and desires, but it must be balanced. Babies are considered immature because they freely express their emotions without much logical thought process. Science is an expression of my maturity, an expression of my ability to analyze situations rationally. With science and music, I am able to use my brain to analyze the world and my heart to interpret it. They may be involved with different organs, but they are part of the same organism: me.